European Commission imposes additional tariffs on Chinese EVs, threatening trade tensions


(MENAFN) The European Commission has announced its decision to impose additional duties, ranging from 17.4 percent to 38.1 percent, on imported Chinese electric cars starting in July. This move, aimed at addressing what the Commission views as excessive support for Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers, is likely to escalate tensions with Beijing. The decision comes shortly after the United States revealed plans to quadruple customs duties on Chinese electric vehicles to 100 percent.

Under the new measures, Chinese electric cars will face additional duties on top of the standard ten percent customs duties. For instance, BYD cars will be subject to an additional duty of 17.4 percent, while SAIC vehicles will face a higher rate of 38.1 percent. European automakers have expressed concerns about the influx of low-cost electric cars from Chinese competitors, which pose a significant challenge to their market share and profitability.

The Commission estimates that the market share of Chinese electric cars in the European Union has surged to eight percent, compared to less than one percent in 2019. This figure is projected to increase to 15 percent by 2025. Moreover, Chinese electric cars are typically priced around 20 percent lower than their European counterparts, exacerbating the competitive pressure on European manufacturers.

European policymakers are wary of repeating the mistakes made in the solar panel industry a decade ago, when the European Union implemented limited measures to restrict Chinese imports. These measures ultimately led to the collapse of many European solar panel manufacturers. The European Commission's decision to impose additional duties on Chinese electric cars reflects its commitment to protecting the interests of European automakers and maintaining a level playing field in the market. However, it risks triggering retaliatory measures from Beijing and escalating trade tensions between the two economic powers. 

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